In her first school in 1907, Dr. Montessori observed children learning from each other. Young children are naturally interested in their older peers. In the Montessori classroom, the youngest children are free to observe the work of the older children and absorb this knowledge. The older children are also encouraged to help the youngest. This allows them to perfect their skills and become the leaders of the class. The classroom age ranges are based on planes of development; all children within the classroom environment are developing in similar ways.
View the following frequently asked questions and answers below.
Why does Montessori have mixed age groups?
How does the guide manage individual lessons for all children?
Montessori has a structured curriculum for each level and year. The guide is trained to observe each child and assess what lessons need to be given and when. In this way, the lessons are individualized and carefully planned. OMMS guides use Transparent Classroom ™ to plan and track lessons given.
Will my student get lessons every day?
Every day, students are encouraged to practice lessons previously received until “mastery” is achieved. Students may not get introduced to a new activity or material every day; however, the guide offers points of interest, gives reminders, and helps each child perfect their skills every day.
If children are free to choose their own activities, how do you get them to choose math or language work?
Montessori is a scientifically designed system of education that helps children develop self-discipline and independence. Children naturally want to learn to read, write, do math, and to learn about the world around them but our traditional schools prevent them from doing it at their own pace. Instead, Montessori classrooms and materials are designed to fit the developmental needs of the children in that age group and the teacher guides them through the materials at just the right moment to entice and enthuse the child to that lesson. As the children choose what they want to do when they want to do it, they are successful in their endeavors and are eager to learn the next lesson.
In a high-fidelity Montessori environment, such as OMMS, it is not necessary to force children to learn; they are eager to learn for themselves.
Will they be ready for traditional school after completing their sixth year at OMMS (Oak Meadow Montessori School)?
We have watched our 6th year students go to middle school, high school and beyond. Our students attend public and private schools and excel in whatever environment they choose. Their success confirms that their authentic Montessori elementary education prepared them for school and for life.
To ensure the rigor of our program, OMMS is accredited by the American Montessori Society (AMS) and Cognia. These standards define and demonstrate the quality and integrity of our program.
If there are no tests and no grades, how do you know when a child is ready to move to the next level?
Our certified Montessori guides are trained to notice the social, emotional, and developmental signals that children are ready to move to the next level. Because lessons are given to individuals or very small groups, the trained Montessori guide can tell immediately whether the child understands the lesson, needs to review a previous concept, or can move forward to the next lesson. Because of this relationship between lessons and assessment, the guide understands where the child is in their development and what support they need to move forward.
Are any children not successful in a Montessori environment?
To be honest, the best predictor of a child’s success in a Montessori environment is the parents’ commitment to the child’s Montessori education. Montessori is a scientifically designed system of education. If you modify that system by adding outside tutoring or academic classes, you will modify the results.